Many members of the Boston Celtics showed up for practice Saturday wearing “We are BG” T-shirts in support of WNBA star Brittney Griner, who has been held in Russia since last February on drug possession charges.
The Women’s National Basketball Players Association and the National Basketball Players Association collaborated on the shirts.
“The shirts were super important not only showing our support for our sister that is detained over in Russia, Brittney Griner. We just wanted to show that togetherness and love that we have throughout not only the NBA but the WNBA,” said NBPA Vice President Grant Williams, per ESPN. “She’s been a vital part of the WNBA over years past, college, and in the amount of impact she’s had on young female athletes, USA and overseas.
The 31-year-old Griner was drafted No. 1 by the Phoenix Mercury in 2013 after winning the NCAA National Championship with Baylor.
She is a seven-time All-Star, 2014 WNBA champion, and two-time Olympic gold medalist.
“As a collective, we wanted to come out and show our support for Brittney Griner. She’s been over there for an extended amount of time, and we feel like enough is enough,” said Jaylen Brown.
“She’s been over there for an extended amount of time, and we feel enough is enough.”
Jaylen Brown on Russia holding Brittney Griner for months. pic.twitter.com/8Va9zPFwf4
— Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) June 4, 2022
Celtic star Jayson Tatum and Griner were members of Team USA at last year’s Summer Olympics in Tokyo and got a chance to know each other due to the COVID restriction put in place.
“It’s extremely tough seeing what she’s going through. I know everybody sees and feels that, and obviously, we’re all together in support trying to bring her back to her family and things like that. Yeah, wearing those shirts today in support of her,” said Tatum.
The 6-foot-9 Griner was detained by the Russian Federal Customs Service at a Moscow airport in mid-February after vape cartridges containing cannabis oil were allegedly found in her luggage.
The United States government says Griner has been wrongfully detained.